(Amadeus). The Worlds of J.S. Bach offers both traditional and new perspectives on the life and work of the man who is arguably the central figure in the Western musical tradition. It appears at a time when, because of the fall of the Iron Curtain, extraordinary new discoveries are being made about Bach and his family at an increasing rate thus this book is able to incorporate important information and images not available even in the recent anniversary year of 2000. After making the case for the universality of Bach's art as an epitome of Western civilization, The Worlds of J.S. Bach considers in broad terms the composer's social, political, and artistic environment, its influence on him, and his interaction with it. Renowned specialists in history, religion, architecture, literature, theater, and dance offer the perspectives of these disciplines as they relate to Bach's milieu, while leading Bach specialists from both the U.S. and Germany focus on the man himself. The book is an outgrowth of the "celebrated" ( Boston Globe ) multidisciplinary Academies sponsored by the Aston Magna Foundation for Music and the Humanities with support from the National Endowment for the Humanities.